Iowa preparing for a heavy look from Wisconsin, depth chart changes and a Badgers team looking to regain some legs in its ground attack are all part of today’s Hawkeye 10@10.
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Here is today’s Hawkeye 10@10:
1. Don’t expect many surprises Saturday when Iowa and Wisconsin resume their pursuit of Big Ten West Division leader Minnesota, renewing acquaintances at Camp Randall Stadium in Madison.
“At the end of the day, this game has always been about who can stop the run,’’ Iowa linebackers assistant Seth Wallace said.
The Badgers lined up with seven offensive linemen at times a year ago and no matter how many linemen are on the field, everything will start up front on Saturday.
“Whether it’s personnel related or scheme related, I think it starts there,’’ Wallace said. “It’s going to be a challenge for us, but it’s a challenge we’re built for. We’ve just got to get our guys to believe in it, then take the plan up to Madison.’’
2. There are only a couple of changes on Iowa’s depth chart for Saturday’s 3 p.m. game at Wisconsin.
The only change on offense reflects the strained calf muscle that kept starting tight end Nate Wieting out of the Northwestern game.
Shaun Beyer and Sam LaPorta are listed 1-2 at the position.
On defense, Joe Evans has been added as third defensive end behind A.J. Epenesa and Zach VanValkenburg on the right side and a now healthy Matt Hankins has returned to the top spot at left cornerback.
Hankins shared the top line with Riley Moss during Northwestern week. Moss is listed as the back-up.
Linebacker Kristian Welch, wide receiver Brandon Smith and offensive guard Kyler Schott join Wieting, all sidelined for the Northwestern game because of injury, remain off the early-week depth chart.
3. Like Iowa, Wisconsin is coming off of a bye week and the Badgers used that time to examine why the offense has been limited to one rushing touchdown over the past two games, losses to Illinois and Ohio State.
Coach Paul Chryst said his staff has pondered if it was relying too much on the skill of running back Jonathan Taylor or if it needs to rely more on the junior.
“You try to assess those things,’’ Chryst said. “There have been a couple of games where we haven’t been able to consistently run the football.’’
Taylor was limited to 52 yards on 20 carries against the Buckeyes and enters Saturday’s game averaging 126.1 yards per game on the ground.
4. The first College Football Playoff rankings of the season will be announced tonight.
The Hawkeyes, sitting with a 6-2 record, opened at 16th a year ago.
They’ll find out where this season’s 6-2 record stacks up around 8 p.m. when the rankings are unveiled on ESPN.
5. Iowa will be facing a Butkus Award semifinalist Saturday.
Wisconsin linebacker Zack Baun was named Monday as one of 12 semifinalists for the award presented to the top linebacker in college football.
He’s one of five Big Ten players to make the cut. Joe Bachie of Michigan State, Jordan Glasgow of Michigan, Jake Hansen of Illinois and Micah Parsons of Penn State are also semifinalists for the Butkus Award.
Baun has recorded 12 tackles for a loss and 7.5 sacks among his 40 tackles this season.
He also leads Wisconsin with eight quarterback hurries and has had one interception and forced two fumbles during the Badgers’ 6-2 start.
6. When Iowa takes the field at Wisconsin on Saturday, coach Kirk Ferentz will be nearing a milestone.
Ferentz has won 94 Big Ten games during his 21 seasons at Iowa.
That leaves him one shy of tying Penn State’s Joe Paterno for fifth on the conference’s all-time list.
7. The starting time for Iowa’s next home game against Minnesota on Nov. 16 won’t be determined until after this weekend’s games.
The Big Ten’s television partners have opted to use a six-day pick for games that day as allowed in their contracts, meaning the kickoff time won’t be finalized until Saturday evening at the earliest.
The start time for the battle for Floyd of Rosedale has been narrowed down to three possibilities, 11 a.m., 2:30 p.m. and 3 p.m.
8. Indiana running back Stevie Scott III and Illinois linebacker Dele Harding were named Monday as the Big Ten offensive and defensive players of the week.
Scott rushed for 116 yards and two touchdowns and caught a 20-yard pass for a score in the Hoosiers’ win over Northwestern to earn offensive honors. Harding returned an interception 54 yards for a touchdown and forced a fumble that was returned 36 yards for a score in addition to recording 12 tackles in the Fighting Illini’s win over Rutgers.
Maryland’s Javon Leake and Michigan’s Giles Jackson shared special teams player of the week honors.
In a game between the Terrapins and Wolverines, Leake recorded a 97-yard kickoff return for a touchdown and Jackson returned the opening kickoff 97 yards for a score.
Leake totaled 113 yards on kickoff returns and Jackson finished with 121.
Purdue running back King Doerue was named the Big Ten freshman of the week.
He rushed for 71 yards and recorded 31 receiving yards in the Boilermakers’ win over Nebraska, scoring a pair of touchdowns.
9. Future Iowa running backs Leshon Williams and Gavin Williams topped 100 yards in playoff action last weekend, highlighting the work of players committed to the Hawkeye program at the prep level.
Leshon Williams, playing for the first time in seven weeks after suffering an ankle injury, rushed for 195 yards and scored three touchdowns to lead Oak Lawn Richards past Washington 20-16 in an Illinois playoff opener while Gavin Williams gained 102 yards on 14 carries for West Des Moines Dowling in its 35-7 win over Des Moines Roosevelt in an Iowa 4A opener.
Elsewhere, tight end Luke Lachey of Grandview Heights in Ohio caught seven passes for 65 yards, Elijah Yelverton had five receptions for 54 yards for Trinity Christian in Texas, A.J. Lawson ran for a three-yard score for Decatur MacArthur in its playoff loss to Mount Zion in Illinois and quarterback Deuce Hogan completed 8-of-20 passes for 133 yards and three touchdowns for Faith Christian of Grapevine, Texas in its win over Fort Worth Southwest Christian.
On defense, end Lukas Van Ness had three tackles for a loss among five tackles for Barrington in an Illinois playoff loss to Niles Notre Dame, Mason Richman had four tackles for Blue Valley in a win over Shawnee Mission East in Kansas, Logan Jones finished with a pair of tackles for Council Bluffs Lewis Central in its Iowa 3A playoff win over Oskaloosa and Brenden Deasfernandes had an interception to go with two tackles for Belleville in a Michigan playoff win over Saline.
10. Iowa plays in a trophy game for the second time this season on Saturday.
The Heartland Trophy – the bronze bull the Hawkeyes and Badgers play for – has resided in Wisconsin since it won a 17-9 game at Kinnick Stadium in 2016.
The Hawkeyes last earned the trophy in 2015 with a 10-6 win at Camp Randall Stadium. Iowa is 1-0 in trophy games this season, winning the Cy-Hawk Trophy at Iowa State by an 18-17 score on Sept. 14.